By the Cold, Hard Football Facts staff
The Cold, Hard Football Facts crew started kicking around the idea of the All-Time 11 back in the summer. We intended it as an offseason feature. But, after some initial agreement on a handful of performers, it quickly became apparent that nobody would agree on every player on our team. A few heated debates followed, and so it has taken a little longer than we expected for us to finalize the team.
We think it was worth the wait. The All-Time 11 is truly the most magnificent collection of football talent ever assembled in one place.
We had a few basic criteria for the All-Time 11:
ONE: The members of our team had to be proven performers on both sides of the ball. Or, so as not to pad the roster with players from the one-platoon era, they had to be proven all-around athletes or players who were so athletic we believe they easily could have become two-way players had it been asked of them.
TWO: They had to be winners. Every player on our team won at least one NFL championship. Most won multiple titles.
Our team is truly awesome when you consider that the All-Time 11 features:
- Four charter members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame
- One of just three players to win a rare NFL "Triple Crown"
- The only guy to play in a Super Bowl and a World Series
- The most dominant ballcarrier in NFL history
- The most dominant wide receiver in NFL history
- Winners of 33 pro football championships
- A guy who flew 30 bombing missions over Germany in World War II
- The No. 2 punter in NFL history
- Two members of the greatest dynasty in NFL history
- The best player on the first team to win three straight NFL championships
- A five-time All-Pro linebacker who began his college career at quarterback and then won the Outland Trophy as college ball's best lineman
- A quarterback who led the league in INTs as a defensive back
- The NFL's last two two-way players
- An offensive lineman who retired as the NFL's all-time leading scorer
- Two of three linemen in history who finished in the Top 3 in Heisman voting
- Players with some of the coolest nicknames in football history